The draw for the Champions League group stages are almost upon us, with Arsenal having qualified for the 18th consecutive season. The changes to the seeding mean we are no longer in Pot One, and could potentially get a very tricky draw this season.
We won’t know for sure until all the qualifiers have been finished, but who could we potentially get?
Below are the potential pots (via Arsenal.com):
Pot One: Barcelona, Bayern Munich, Chelsea, Benfica, Juventus, Paris Saint-Germain, Zenit St Petersburg and PSV Eindhoven
Pot Two: Real Madrid, Atlético Madrid, FC Porto, Arsenal, Valencia, Manchester City
Pot Two or Three (dependent on other results): Shakhtar Dontesk, Sevilla
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Pot Three: Olympique Lyonnais, Dynamo Kyiv, Olympiacos, Galatasaray, Roma
Pot Four: Borussia Monchengladbach, Wolfsburg, Dinamo Zagreb, Maccabi Tel-Aviv, Gent, Malmo
Yet to qualify (who could qualify on Wednesday): Manchester United, Club Brugge, Apoel Nic, FC Astana, Bayer Leverkusen, Lazio, Partizan Belgrade, BATE Borisov, Sporting Lisbon, CSKA Moscow
Manchester United are the only team that appear fairly safely through to the group stages, so the rest of the teams are still in question.
We could end up seeing a group of Barcelona, Arsenal, Roma, VfL Wolfsburg.
Or, conversely, we could draw PSV Eindhoven, Arsenal, Dynamo Kyiv, Malmo.
We have more often than not enjoyed superb success in the group stages, but have stumbled at the last 16. Hopefully things change this season, and we are able to mount some kind of challenge against Europe’s elite.
Our woeful performance against AS Monaco last season pushed a number of fans over the edge, and we need to be far improved this time around.
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Whoever we draw in the group stages we should be confident of qualifying, but we need to put this stumbling start to the campaign out of our heads and play the way we know we can.